HOMEBREW Digest #4500 Mon 15 March 2004

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  African Guinness, Bramali (Alexandre Enkerli)
  Water treatment ("Martin Farrimond")
  Re: The Yeast That Ate Ann Arbor ("Don Scholl")
  Hop Tea as dry hopping alternative ("Pat and Debbie")
  Yeast blends ("Dave Burley")
  Re: Regulator and OPD's ("Kerry & Dell Drake")
  Pranqster clone success ("Mike Maag")
  Reviving Old Yeast ("Pat Humphrey")
  Re: Reusing the Guinness Widget ("Ryan and Shelly Furstenau")

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 08:32:35 -0400 From: Alexandre Enkerli <aenkerli at indiana.edu> Subject: African Guinness, Bramali This week's Devine Link had this interesting information about Guinness in Africa being popular enough to create capacity problems in Dublin. It's a fascinating world we live in! Shouldn't Guinness be renamed "Africa Dark Ale" in parallel with IPA? In Mali (where I do research), Guinness beer is brewed by Bramali S.A.: <http://www.skolinternational.com/cgi-bin/breweries.pl?pays_id=31> Bramali's main beer is Castel. From <http://members.allstream.net/~jdoakes/africa.html>: "The national beer, brewed in Bamako by Bramali, is Castel *, a dark straw lager with grassy nose, porridgey, corn-like aroma, and some rotten cabbage that manages to remain unobtrusive." The same company also makes Coca-Cola products, including a grenadine soft drink: <http://mali.coca-cola.com/brands.html> The soft drinks themselves are extremely sweet for North American standards. No wonder the beer is too. Local alcoholic beverages (palm wine, millet beer, mead...) are sometimes made but aren't available commercially. Of course, Mali's population is 95% Muslim and alcohol consumption follows religious and cultural rules... As a side note, West Africa had a special connection to Coca-Cola because of kola nuts. Local cola is much different from the North American version. I always speculated that kola nuts might still be in that drink's ingredients and have been thinking about a kola beer. Cheers! Ale-X in <a href="http://www.moncton.org/search/english/CITYHALL/water/ waterquality.pdf">Moncton</a> Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 13:25:40 -0000 From: "Martin Farrimond" <m.farrimond at blueyonder.co.uk> Subject: Water treatment I live in an area of the UK where the water has very high temporary hardness. Now chemistry was *never* my thing, so I'm slightly out of my depth here. Many books suggest boiling the liquor for 45mins prior to water treatment prior to mashing. This certainly causes loads of chalk (CaCO3??) to be precipitated out of solution. This I then skim/filter off. The questions is, having done this, how do I now determine the chemical constituents of the post-boiled liquor to then figure out what needs adding for a particular brew/style? I'm pretty sure that I'll lose some Ca (deposited onto the heater element?) & (hopefully) most of the CaCO3. Our (pre-boil) water breakdown is: Ca - 127 Mg - 8 Na - 16 SO4 - 72 HCO3 - 337 Cl - 31 Tot. Hardness as CACO3 - 351 TDS - 377 Thx, Martin All outgoing emails - including attachments - are scanned for viruses by Norton AntiVirus. Whilst this is not a 100% virus-free guarantee, it's pretty close. Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 08:51:08 -0500 From: "Don Scholl" <dws at engineeringdimensions.com> Subject: Re: The Yeast That Ate Ann Arbor I just brewed 5 gallons of braggot from a recipe in the Oct. 04 (?) issue of BYO. Instead of liquid dry champagne yeast, I used White Labs Sweet Mead yeast. Now this braggot has 7.75 lbs. of xtra light liquid extract and 8.8 lbs. of honey and I pitched a 2000ml starter. When this started fermenting, it pushed the airlock out of lid. After sterilizing everything that I had to replace, added another airlock, it pushed the lid off the plastic fermentation bucket! I have a hard enough time trying to get the cover off. Is White Labs is selling extra potent yeast? Just my similar experience. Don Scholl Twin Lake, Michigan (140.9, 302.4)Rennerian "Even if they kidnap my mother, I still will not brew a light beer." Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 08:56:52 -0600 From: "Pat and Debbie" <reddydp at charter.net> Subject: Hop Tea as dry hopping alternative Hi everyone, Although the 'hop tea' thread going on here the last 10 days or so seemed to focus mostly on adding hop bitterness, don't most folks use hop teas as an alternative to dry hopping? I've dry hopped several beers, with fine results, yet I realize some brewers never dry hop and claim to get similar, if not the same results, with only finishing hops - without a hop back mind you. I am leaning toward never dry hopping again - simply because it's one more step in the process I can eliminate. So, a question for those who never dry hop (Mr. Collins), I am curious...if I have a recipe I typically dry hop with 1 oz., how much do I need to add at the end of the boil to achieve roughly the same aroma? 1.5 oz? 2 oz? I am brewing next weekend, a beer that's heavily dry hopped, and I was thinking about doubling the amount I would normally add to my secondary for a week and adding it to the kettle just as I shut off the heat and begin my whirlpool. That would give me almost an hour's contact time as I let the 12 gallons whirlpool for 10 minutes and my draining/chilling/aerating takes another 40 minutes. Thanks. Pat Reddy River Bound Brewing Bridgeton, MO - --- Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free. Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com). Version: 6.0.624 / Virus Database: 401 - Release Date: 3/15/2004 Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 10:40:26 -0500 From: "Dave Burley" <Dave_Burley at charter.net> Subject: Yeast blends Brewsters: In discussing yeast blends versus beer blends of separate fermentation with the same yeasts, Robin makes the point that we might expect different results. I agree.It is a common thing to find synergistic combinations in blends of microorganisms. The poem "Jack Sprat could eat no fat and his wife could eat no lean, so 'twixt the two of them they licked the platter clean." applies to microorganisms as well. A classic example is San Francisco sourdough bread culture in which the yeast cannot consume maltose, the lactic bacterium can. By-products from yeast autolysis provide nutrients for the bacterium and the bacterium returns the favor by dropping the pH through its production of lactic acids such that other yeast cannot compete with the main culture yeast ( Torulopsis or whatever taxonomic name is in vogue this week) . In cheese, there are many examples of non-lactic acid bacteria, molds, etc which during their metabolic activities produce amino acids, etc which act as nutrients for other microorganisms. And, of course, the synergistic and sequential interactions of yeast and bacteria in Belgian brewing are legend. These synergisitic interactions are what produce these metastable equilibrium conditions such that a blend of seemingly disparate organisms is stable in a process within certain process parameters and produces a sensially stable product. It is even imaginable that these blends behave like buffers in keeping the final product more stable over a range of process parameters ( temperature, concentration, pH , etc) . The powdery versus flocculant behavior of yeast is but one example where two strains of the same species can co-exist in a pseudo-balance depending on brewing conditions. Temperature dependence of the product profile in which lager yeast might be used to clean up after a warm ale fermentation is a possibility and possibly is practice today in the brewing industry when using flocculant yeast to bottle condition ales. Robin's point and mine is that doing two beers separately and then blending them versus fermenting a blend of yeast will likely have different results regarding the fermentation rate, temperature dependence, product profile, etc. My additional point is that even though one might expect a blend to be more unstable than a pure yeast, perhaps one might find that the blend is the more stable over a range of processing conditions due to the interactions. A lager yeast can pick up the fermentation rate when the temperature falls in a predominatly ale fermentation, for example. That is not to say other properties may not change ( the product profile for example) but the fermentation rate of the blend is more stable over the temperature range than the ale yeast would be by itself. Keep on Brewin' Dave Burley Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 16:22:04 -0500 From: "Kerry & Dell Drake" <arcticmallards at cox.net> Subject: Re: Regulator and OPD's OPD regulators also have a leak-preventer built in. After a certain amount of flow, they reduce the output to just a trickle. When they were first introduced, I thought my new Weber grill had a bad regulator. What I found instead was that if I opened the valve on the tank with the grill burners on, the device would activate and all I would get was a pilot size flame from the burners. To return normal flow, I'd have to turn off all the burners, then the tank, then slowly turn the tank back on and then the burners. I get the same result on my brew stand. I have three ring burners that are supplied from one 5 Gal tank (not the same tank on the grill)via a three port manifold. If I crank up all three burners, the device kicks in and reduces the flow to almost nothing. I then have to follow a similar procedure to restart the flow, turn off the three burner controls, turn off the supply to the manifold and turn off the tank, then turn on in reverse order, starting with the tank. It seems that even pressurizing the manifold, which is made from 3/8" brass fittings, is momentarily enough flow to engage the safety device. I am considering getting a bigger tank for the brew stand because they allow more flow since they will normally be used for higher heat-output devices such as camper furnaces. The other obvious benefit the larger tank would have is that I wouldn't have to get it filled as often. Kerry Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 19:18:16 -0500 From: "Mike Maag" <maagm at rica.net> Subject: Pranqster clone success I built up a starter from the yeast dregs from a fresh bottle of PranQster from North Coast Brewing. I formulated a clone as follows for a 10 gallon batch : DC Plisen 16 lb Vienna 4 lb DC wheat 1 lb DC special B 0.5 lb DC aromatic 1 lb Candy sugar 2 lb Saaz 4.7 3 oz 60 min Saaz 4.7 1 oz 30 min Mash with 6 gal water, 150F for 1 hr. Sparge w 10 gal water, boil 20 min, skim off hot break, add bittering hops...add sugar 15 min before end of boil. The result was virtually indistinguishable from the original by my, and my friends, albeit jaded, taste buds. It seems the dregs contain the same yeast(s) as used in the fermentation. At worst, it is an excellent ale. Mike Maag, in the Shenandoah Valley Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 18:44:22 -0600 From: "Pat Humphrey" <fermenter07 at hotmail.com> Subject: Reviving Old Yeast Ryan mentioned that he was able to revive some old yeast that was about 2 years old. I recently tried to get a 2 year old Wyeast pak to revive as well. After about 10 days without any activity, I opened the pack and poured the contents into a flask that contained some starter wort. I gave the yeast/wort solution a blast of oxygen for about 10 seconds. Within a day or two, the culture was growing very well. I suppose that the oxygen gave it the boost it needed to get it going. Cheers, Pat Lake Villa, IL Return to table of contents
Date: Mon, 15 Mar 2004 19:27:53 -0600 From: "Ryan and Shelly Furstenau" <furstenau at frontiernet.net> Subject: Re: Reusing the Guinness Widget I have reused the Guinness Widget in my beer bottles with success. The widget was completely empty and I placed it into the bottle during bottling. I let the bottles naturally carbonate with the yeast. The result was that when I opened the bottle, the widget forced CO2 and whatever air was in it to start with, into the bottle and created more head/foam. It was not the nice head that you get from the Guinness bottles, but probably because my bottles were only carbonated and did not have that correct mixture of nitrogen. So, my conclusion is that if I could fill my beer bottles with CO2/N2 pressurized beer, then the widget would give the same result. On the other hand, if my beer were already pressurized as such, then why wouldn't I just drink it right out of the keg!!! Ryan Return to table of contents
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